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What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: From Fox Hunting to Whist -- the Facts of Daily Life in Nineteenth-Century Englandby Daniel Pool
Synopses & Reviews
For every frustrated reader of the great nineteenth-century English novels of Austen, Trollope, Dickens, or the Brontës who has ever wondered whether a duke outranked an earl, when to yell "Tally Ho!" at a fox hunt, or how one landed in "debtor's prison," here is a "delightful reader's companion that lights up the literary dark" (The New York Times).
This fascinating, lively guide clarifies the sometimes bizarre maze of rules, regulations, and customs that governed everyday life in Victorian England. Author Daniel Pool provides countless intriguing details (did you know that the "plums" in Christmas plum pudding were actually raisins?) on the Church of England, sex, Parliament, dinner parties, country house visiting, and a host of other aspects of nineteenth-century English life — both "upstairs" and "downstairs."
An illuminating glossary gives at a glance the meaning and significance of terms ranging from "ague" to "wainscoting," the specifics of the currency system, and a lively host of other details and curiosities of the day.
"A delightful book...indispensable to lovers of Victorian literature." M.G. Lord, New York Newsday
"This entertaining social history is just the ticket for Americans who like to read Dickens and other 19th-century novelists...or for anyone who likes to read histories and biographies of that era." Patrick T. Reardon, Chicago Tribune
"It's great fun reading this, and Pool has provided a valuable service." Glenn Giffin, The Denver Post
"Although there are many books on the social history of 19th-century Britain...this volume is useful because of its concise chapters and lengthy glossary." Library Journal
About the Author
Daniel Pool received a doctorate in political science from Brandeis University and a law degree from Columbia University. He lives in New York City.
Table of Contents
Hogsheads and Drams: English Measurement
The Public World
Precedence: Of Bishops, Barristers, and Baronets
How to Address Your Betters
Esq., Gent., K.C.B., etc.
Status: Gentlemen and Lesser Folk
Society and "The Season"
How to Address the Nontitled
"May I Have This Dance?"
The Rules of Whist and Other Card Games
Calling Cards and Calls
The Major Rituals
Presentation at Court
The Dinner Party
The Country House Visit
Entail and Protecting the Estate
Bankruptcy, Debt, and Moneylending
Power and the Establishment
Britannia Rules the Waves
The Church of England
Oxford and Cambridge
"The Law Is a Ass"
Crime and Punishment
Please, James, the Coach
Life on the Farm
The Midlands, Wessex, and Yorkshire
Who's Who in the Country
Shire and Shire Alike: Local Government in Britain
"The Theory and System of Fox Hunting"
Vermin, Poachers, and Keepers
Fairs and Markets
The Private World
"Reader, I Married Him"
An Englishman's Home
Houses with Names
How the English Kept Clean
"Please, Sir, I Want Some More."
Drink and the Evils Thereof
A Taxonomy of Maids
The Grim World
Death and Other Grave Matters
What Our Readers Are Saying
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Education » Classroom Resources
History and Social Science » Europe » Great Britain » General History
History and Social Science » Europe » Western Europe » General
History and Social Science » Literary History » British » 19th Century
History and Social Science » World History » England » General
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General